HR3149: The Equal Employment for All Act was introduced in July 2009 and for almost a year now, the legislation has sat idle as “the people” starve. This critical piece of legislation would make it illegal for employers to use a citizen’s personal credit report to hire and fire. After thousands and thousands of letters and phone calls to the House Committee on Financial Services, citizens are wondering why there has been no hearing scheduled or movement on the legislation. Committee members have been deploying all the typical politician stall tactics such as ‘the health care debate, the issue is being studied in depth’ and that takes time, etc. Since it’s already a law in Hawaii and Washington State and soon will be law in Oregon, citizens are scratching their heads thinking ‘this is NOT something complex that takes almost a year to figure out.’ Why is there still no movement or a hearing on the legislation scheduled? After all, members of Congress are elected to represent the “will of the people” and 90+ percent of “the people” want this legislation passed NOW! So what’s the hold up?
In a democracy “the people” rule, right? Surly money funneled via political PACs and lobbyists couldn’t be overriding “democracy by the people for the people” could it? Members of Congress are called “representatives” which means, we thought, they “represent” the “will of the people,” not the big three credit bureaus and corporations. At every turn, “we the people” are told to believe and participate in the “democratic process” to air our issues and grievances. We’ve been doing plenty of that “participation” thing, but just to be safe, we decided to do a little checking up on our “representatives” on the House Committee on Financial Services. We of course trust them 100% but thought we might should do some verifying just in case . . . so that’s what we did and here’s what we found.
Almost half (40+ %) of the members of the House Committee on Financial Services took money from either Experian, Equifax or Trans Union and some even took PAC money from all three during the most recent “2010 Cycle” as they call it in Washington. All total the members took $104,727 in PAC money from the big three. In 2008, Barney Frank, the Committee Chair took $25 K and in 2010 Spencer Baucus, Ranking Committee member, took $7 K but he pales in comparison to Melissa Bean who took $10+ K. For the entire list of “representatives” that sit on the committee taking PAC money from the big three credit bureaus opposed to passage of HR3149, visit: http://hr3149.blogspot.com/2010/03/democracy-and-money-why-hr3149-is.html
Now here is the question at hand, this democracy that we lowly citizens are supposed to support and believe in . . . does our vote and opinion ever count? And as for that “Cycle” thing as it’s called in Washington . . . would it be complete blasphemy to perhaps suggest that maybe, just maybe, “we the people” may be getting suckered just a little by that “Cycle” thing? We certainly wouldn’t suggest that PAC money is being used in any quid pro quo, pay-to-play, grease the palm arrangements with members of the committee. Nor would we be so bold as to suggest that wine-em-and-dine-em outings and backroom meetings are taking place to kill HR3149 from every coming to a vote. Activities such as all that would be called “corruption” and we wouldn’t dare call it that, because “we the people” know that this is “democracy” working as intended by our founding fathers. George Washington would be proud if still alive today! He and Barney Frank would be the best of friends for sure.
As lowly citizens most of us are not attorneys and members of the American elite like our members of Congress. We’re just dumb citizens who don’t understand the “legislative process” and how well it’s working for us. Isn’t this kinda like on those TV legal shows where people with their hands in the till are supposed to recuse themselves from serving in a judicial capacity or sitting in judgment? If you’re taking money from the big three credit bureaus who oppose passage of HR3149, how can you be unbiased and objective? It’s not possible even for a saint, much less a politician!
In Congress, however, it seems to work the other way around. The more members of the House Committee on Financial Services that have their hands are in the till, via credit bureau PACs, the smarter the money makes them . . . and the more inclined they are to look out for “the people.” It’s funny how different ethics and the law work for members of Congress, but seem to be the opposite for us lowly citizens out here in the real world. Nonetheless, we know you’re rich, important and went to law school and all this stuff is just way over our heads. So we’re just going to leave HR3149 in your very capable hands because we know you’re representing us and will do what’s best for your constituents and the American people. That’s why you’re admired, held in high esteem and are called leaders and “public servants” right? We know you would never serve yourself or cover for your elite corporate friends, but instead always have what is best for “the people” in mind.
It’s ok that you enabled Wall Street to steal us all blind and destroy the economy. It’s ok that you bailed them out with our tax money. After all, they’re your personal friends and we’re not. It’s ok that because of your friends’ greed that there are no jobs and as a result millions of Americans have had their personal credit reports destroyed. Why would we lowly citizens want or expect fairness, equality and a level playing field in the workplace? As a member of the American elite, everything is skewed and tilted in your direction and that’s the way it has always been in America and Washington. Why should we change anything at this late stage of the game? Isn’t the status quo and business as usual in Washington best for us all?
In closing, we citizens would just like to say “thanks” for all you’ve done for us . . . especially you members of the House Committee on Financial Services. You’ve taught us how democracy works, you’ve demonstrated your heartfelt concern for the American people starving, being foreclosed upon and yes, even committing suicide due to the catch 22 of no job = bad credit and bad credit = no job. Discrimination in the workplace is just fine as long as your elite friends at the big three credit bureaus can make a buck off the credit dead carcass of an American citizen.
As you pour yourself a cocktail from the top shelf of course, light that Cuban cigar and dine with the lobbyists from Trans Union, Experian and Equifax let not your conscience be troubled. “We the people” now understand that their money just helps you think better and more slowly. Now we fully understand “democracy” and will remember you this November . . .
Follow the Money and Uncover the Truth About “Democracy” and the Killing of HR3149